Lesson Ideas


Here are some great lesson ideas submitted by teachers to us – these will give you a feel for teaching using apps.

There is also a great resource over at Apptivities – very much worth checking out.

Ideas for everybody

Activity Description Learning
Recording with Caster Free Be creative with Caster Free and record and edit a range of sounds. How can you use your digital creations to complement other class-work? Ask your students to create sound-scapes for different situations.  Developing students’ digital literacy skills by selecting which sounds will best enhance their creations.
Wikipanion and Idea Sketch Choose a topic and allow 60 seconds for students to read about the topic, and then use Idea Sketch to create a Mind Map, capturing and organising what they had learnt with in five minutes. Ask students to share their thoughts with the class. Using ICT to organise, manage and summarise information.
Comparing Todo and Bento Compare Todo and Bento – ask students to make judgements and validate their choice of app. Which app do they prefer? They could complete a Venn diagram to show their findings. Examining similarities and differences between the two tools and evaluate.
Storyboarding with Strip Design Ask students to use Strip Design to storyboard their response to a range of issues discussed e.g. in Health explore friendship, importance of sleep, or anti-bullying. Ask students to provide a health promoting response in six screens. Developing skills in summarising and sequencing key elements.
Todo and digital diaries Ask students to use Todo to create digital diaries – this could be done at school or at home. You could ask a range of questions for students to respond to in their diaries. Great for reflection or self-assessment type activities. Reflecting on changes in students’ understanding through their experiences. Provides teachers with an opportunity to use the diary as an assessment for learning tool.
Polldaddy Need to survey the class? Create a class poll using Polldaddy and for the adventurous, include this poll in a class blog or wiki. How about surveying students about their thoughts about ways to improve their classroom. What ideas did they come up with? What were the most popular ideas? Collecting aggregate data and also exporting to enable further analysis.
Brainstorming with Idea Sketch Brainstorm ideas for a design brief using Idea Sketch. Annotate your ideas to determine how you will Using ICT for visualising thinking.

Ideas for the Arts

Activity Description Learning
‘Secret sound’ fun with Caster Free Sound effects are used extensively in music, films, advertisements etc. It can be very difficult to recognise a sound without having visual cues or knowing the context. Ask the students to play a game with a classmate, a group or the whole class by recording different sounds using Caster Free. You can actually record the real sound or try to reproduce it using props to help you. Some suggestions are: a kettle boiling, a printer, a train, a light switch, water running, tap dripping, paper tearing, a zipper etc. See who can recognise the ‘secret sounds’. Developing digital literacy skills by investigating how sound effects are used to enhance communication.

Ideas for Civics and Citizenship

Activity Description Learning
BBC News View the news over a few days and identify ways values such as fairness, tolerance, understanding and respect are depicted in the media. Compile your results in a spreadsheet (you could use Numbers) or as a concept map (you could Idea Sketch). Exploring values which underpin society
Getty Images

Select an image from the gallery that depicts individuals engaging in cultural events in a responsible and active way. Ask students the following questions:

  • What is happening in this picture?
  • How do you know?
  • How do the images capture the issue?
  • What further research is needed after seeing the visuals?
Exploring concepts of democracy.
Poll Daddy Use the app to explore how and why people make decisions. As a class, discuss why voting is a key method for group decision making in a democracy. Ask students to consider if they have voted. e.g for school leaders. Ask the students to create their own polls and then consider the following questions: Is voting a fair method for decision-making? Why is efficient, quick and transparent voting important? What are some problems associated with voting? How might devices like the iPad and using an app like Polldaddy support taking surveys? Participating in processes associated with citizenship such as decision making and voting.

Ideas for Design and Technology

Activity Description Learning
Planning your stories or projects using Idea Sketch Planning is one of the most important parts of the writing process. Invite the students to develop a Mind Map using a program such as Idea Sketch to map their ideas and let their creativity flow! A good way to get started is to write the title of their story or project in the centre of the page, and then create three main branches off this central idea for the beginning, middle and the end, using three different colours. Sub-branches will radiate off these main branches as more details are added to the plan. Using ICT to visualise thinking and to manage information.
Refining design briefs using Idea Sketch Ask students to read a design brief and come up with two options, identifying the considerations and constraints for each. Then ask the students to create a concept map representing their thoughts, using Idea Sketch. Ask students to share their ideas with each other and then to add any more ideas to their Mind Map. Ask each student to select which option they will follow and provide reasons for their choice. Are there any similarities or differences between their selections? Using ICT to visualise thinking and to manage information.

Ideas for Economics

Activity Description Learning
World Factbook Gather data about factors that influence health such as literacy rates for different countries. Compare these literacy rates with life expectancy? What trends are apparent? Why? Can you draw conclusions about developing and developed countries? Exploring problems of global significance.

Ideas for English

Activity Description Learning
Strip Design and the class novel Reading a class novel? Divide the novel in the number of parts that is equivalent to the number of children in your class. Ask each child to create a Strip Design page that reflects the key themes of their selected section of the novel. Working collaboratively to analyse and summarise text and develop greater understanding through representing meaning of the text in a visual mode.
Comparing the BBC News Ask students to select a world news story. How does the BBC treat this news story compared with other interational news agencies such as Reuters News Pro. How does the BBC app represent the story or issue? Go to the BBC website at www.bbc.co.uk/ news/ and locate the news story. How is the news on the BBC app different to the BBC News website? Is the story repeated on CNN? Identifying the ideas, themes and issues explored in a range of electronic texts.
Getty Images and Literacy
  • Ask students to select an image and answer the following questions. 
  • What do you think is happening outside the frame? 
  • How does the photo make them feel?
  • What do they think happened five minutes before and five minutes after the photo was taken?
  • What caption would you give this photo?
Developing skills in digital literacy.

Ideas for Geography

Activity Description Learning
Google Earth – around the world Studying Geography? Google Earth allows you to navigate the world with a swipe of your finger. You can adjust your view to see mountainous terrain or browse the millions of geo-located photos from around the world using the panoramic layer. Select a country you are not familiar with and explore its geography using evidence from maps and photographs to support your explanations and draw inferences. Present your findings observing geographical presentation conventions. You can export images from Google Earth into other apps such as Keynote or Pages. Interpreting information on maps and photographs.
Google Earth and me Ask the students to use the Google Earth app as an orientation and directional tool when in their suburb, town or when on excursion. Ask students to evaluate how well Google Earth was at providing orientation and directions by completing a T-chart using Pages. Students could comment on what was good and what could be improved. Interpreting information on maps and photographs.

Ideas for Health and Physical Education

Activity Description Learning
WikiHood and health Explore the community resources available to young people. Categorise each resource according to what support they provide: physical, emotional, mental and/or social health. You could use Pages or Idea Sketch to present your ideas. Identifying local resources to support physical, social, emotional and mental health.
Puppet Pals Create a story about friendship using the moving characters and recording your voice. Brainstorm with students other ways to use Puppet Pals. Developing students’ digital literacy skills through health promotion.
Discovering recreational resources with WikiHood What recreational facilities are available for young people in your community? Were you surprised by the findings? How many of these resources where you aware of? How many of the resources do you use regularly? Identify the dimensions of health that are enhanced through use of recreational facilities. Use Idea Sketch to present your information. Identifying local health services available for young people.

Ideas for History

Activity Description Learning
Strip Design and history Ask students to use Strip Design to create a timeline outlining the sequence of a key historical event. After researching a topic from the History Maps app, challenge the students to include all the relevant facts and information, to demonstrate their understanding, in a concise manner by using Strip Design. Ask students to begin with a storyboard or plan. They could use a range of apps to plan including Idea Sketch, Corkulous, Todo or Bento. After completing their planning students can then create their comic or graphic novel. Analysing and describing key historical events.

Ideas for Languages

Activity Description Learning
Using Caster Free for languages Ask your students to use Caster Free, and record a simple conversation in their selected language. Ask students to pair up and share their conversation with a classmate. Students could reflect on pronunciation, tone, intonation and metre in the conversations. Using ICT to discriminate and apply pronunciation, tone, intonation and metre in conversation.


Ideas for Mathematics

Activity Description Learning
Excitement graph using Numbers Develop a plot profile by determining the main events of a story. This can occur during the reading of the text as a means of summarising each chapter, or after reading to recall the significant events. Number the main events in the order they occur. Then rate the ‘excitement level’ of each event. This information can be entered onto a Numbers spreadsheet and a line graph created. The vertical axis recording the Excitement level (1-10, with 10 being the highest excitement level) and the horizontal axis using the number code to record the event. Share your Excitement graph with peers and identify similarities and differences. Summarising the text, representing information in a different format by moving from text to graph and then identifying similarities and differences to develop greater understanding of the story.
Using Numbers Collect data on purchases from the supermarket and /or green grocer, for example a shopping docket. Use Numbers to categorise the food, for example acclrding to healthy eating recommendations and create a graph. Interpret the graph. How difficult was it to categorise the food? What improvements could be suggested in regards to food intake? What are the limitations of just using purchases from the supermarket and/green grocer? Ask students to write up a report of their findings or contribute their thoughts to a class wiki. Collecting, classifying, presenting, analysing and evaluating data to inform their understanding of healthy eating.
Creating a chart using Numbers Carry out a quick classroom survey to collect some data. Ask students to use the Charting tool to add rows and name labels to create a variety of charts such as bar and pie. Discuss the colour coding, size of section and how the data is presented. Ask probing questions to support students to analyse the data. To developing an understanding of creating charts and selecting the most appropriate format to represent data.


Ideas for Science

Activity Description Learning
Star Walk in your backyard Studying astronomy? Star Walk is one of the most amazing, high-quality, dynamic and realistic stargazing guide. You will find stars, planets, constellations and more with Star Walk. For homework, ask students to use Star Walk to show their parents or siblings some of the constellations, planets and stars in their backyard. Using ICT to explore space.
Planetsazimuth and altitude View the solar system in 2D or 3D and learn about azimuth and altitude. Explain why azimuth and altitude are useful for sailors? When do you think knowing about azimuth and altitude will be useful for you? Using ICT to explore planets in the solar system.
Planets – comparing and contrasting Explore the planets in more detail – rotate and magnify each of them to gain a greater understanding of their uniqueness. Select two planets and compare and contrast. Using ICT to explore planets in the solar system.
Touch Physics Learn the basics of Physics by creating shapes to move the wheel and learn more about the laws of physics. Set a challenge for the students to complete several levels in the game. Who can take on the laws of physics to complete all 30 levels? Learning about the laws of physics.

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